Inquiring Minds: A plane called Dakota

Each week the staff at the Roseville Library answers more than 2,500 questions on every subject under the sun. Here is one some of the most interesting ones they’ve gotten lately.

Q. There was a plane used in World War II called the Dakota. What can you tell me about it?

A. The Dakota, also known as the C-47 Skytrain, was a military transport vehicle developed from the civilian Douglas DC-3 airliner. The Dakota was a military workhorse, transporting cargo and troops in both the Pacific and European theaters of war. In the Pacific, the planes were used extensively in campaigns of Guadalcanal, New Guinea and Burma, but their best-known operations came when they were used to fly supplies over “the Hump” from India into China. After World War II, the planes figured prominently in the Berlin Airlift of 1948, when the Allies kept the door to the West open despite the efforts of the Soviets to cut supply lines to Berlin. Surplus C-47s were converted to civilian use after the war and they formed the heart of many a post-war start-up commercial aviation fleet. The planes were known to be reliable and versatile, and some of them stayed in civilian use up to the present century. 

(Internet Resources)

- Do you have a question for the staff at the Roseville Library? You can call them at 651-628-6803 or ask your question in person at the Information Desk, Roseville Library, 2180 Hamline Ave. Library hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday; and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday.


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